Fly-in Fishing Packing Tips

Weight Limits

We have a weight limit of 125lbs of gear per person. This weight limit includes everything that will go on the airplane with you. So it will include your personal gear (clothes, fishing gear, tackle box, poles, cameras, and whatever else you bring with you) food, all beverages (consider 19lbs per case of pop or beer?CANS ONLY. We do NOT fly glass bottles, due to the mess of breakage cases or gallons of water, liquor bottles (Preferably plastic bottles, if available) REMEMBER: all that goes in the airplane with you is included in the weight limit of 125lbs per person.

It does not matter if there are 4 or 6 or 8 people in your group. The weight limit is the same. If all seats are not full on account of the number of people in your group and there are empty seats in the plane, we will take out the extra seats and use that room for taking in whatever supplies is needed to go in for use at the cabins. You are paying for 125lbs per person, and that is no matter the size of your group.

Here are some suggestions to consider to help keep the weight down to the weight limit allowed.

Non-residents can buy a Fishing License and Outdoor Card on-line here


Make a menu and stick to it.

Have 1 person in charge of buying the food. Otherwise, items get duplicated or even tripled.

Fishing is very good, so you don't need to pack extra food for "just in the case the fish aren't biting." You will catch fish for dinner.

When shopping, do you really need a monster bottle of mustard or ketchup or mayo or cans of vegetables? Take some of the food out of the cans and put in in plastic bags and freeze if possible

Don't bring and pack bottles or cans that are far too large for what you will use during your trip.

Freeze any foods and beverages that can be frozen. This can be used as ice in your coolers, such as freezing bottles of water or jugs of water. Use frozen concentrated juice containers as ice while it is thawing for breakfast drinks. If you are bringing frozen french fries or bags of frozen vegetables, use those as ice in your coolers for travel. This can save you a large amount of unnecessary weight.

Plastic or glass?? If you have a choice between purchasing plastic or glass bottles, go with plastic.

Plastic is much lighter and can be burned and does not have to be hauled back out with the garbage. We don't appreciate glass breakage at the camp site or on the airplanes.


Water: We supply cases of bottled water for guests at camp. We usually have 5 to 10 cases on site. There is NO need to haul all of the cases of water into the camp. We are required to post signs to boil the water at the lakes. If this makes you feel better about drinking the lake water, do that. We drink only lake water and after you try it, I think you will agree it is some of the best tasting water you will ever drink. It makes great coffee, too. All water goes through a filtration system also to be on the safe side. There is a well at Vaughan which is the best tasting water I have ever had.

Remember, there's LOTS of water in the lake. The lake levels might be a bit lower than usual, but they are not dried up. One thing the pilots will leave behind if there is not room in the plane, will be the unnecessary cases of water.

Bottles of Water or Soda: Why not pack packet's of kool-aid or lemonade or tea and mix with water? Those take very little space and add up very little weight to your limit.

Beer or Soda: If you are big beer drinkers or soda drinkers and do want to order them, (cans only, we will NOT fly cases of bottles) call those orders in ahead of time (at least 3 to 4 weeks) and we will try to get them flown in to the cabin before your arrival. We will try and work it in on another flight that has spare room. We will try to haul what we can prior to your arrival if we have enough notice. Remember beer & liquor is expensive in Canada.


Check the weather forecast before you pack for your trip. You can find the forecast on our Home page of this website or go to your own weather website and check out Dryden and Sioux Lookout Ontario weather. And remember, you are out in the wilderness. You don't need to have a clean pair of clothes for each new day. The fashion police do not visit the camp. Some of our guests have told us they bring their oldest clothes to wear out fishing and when they are heading home, they burn the old clothes or shoes so they don't have to haul them back home. Good idea.

You can leave your travel clothes in your vehicle.

You don't need to haul those out to the lake with you and add to your weight.

You can change at the airbase before you head for home.

Dress in layers. That helps you in packing your gear, too. You don't need to have parkas if the forecast is 70 degrees or more. Rain suits work allot better than a poncho in a heavy rain, along with water proof shoes or boots.

Fishing Gear:

Sort your tackle box before you pack for your trip.

You don't need to carry your musky lures if you are going walleye fishing. Or you don't need to carry your walleye lures if fishing for small mouth bass. Pack accordingly. Bring what you need. These lures are heavy and count towards your weight fast.

Also, the medium size to smaller tackle boxes are the best. You can still have all the lures and line you need and they are easiest for loading in the planes. The Monster Tackle Boxes are not necessary nor are they appreciated.

Fishing Rods & Tubes:

We ask you put your fishing rods in rod tubes. (Rod tubes only. NOT SEWER PIPE) Leave that at home. Some people use sewer pipe for rod tubes. Leave those at home, please. It is too heavy and clumsy. If you want to use them to transport your rods to the flying service that's ok but not for the plane ride.

Please try to keep the size of the rod tubes as short as you can. No longer than 6 foot is the best.

Your rods are safer in tubes and they are easier for the pilot to load without hurting himself.

Make sure you have all lures OFF the lines.

Please try to condense your rods in rod tubes. All you need is a lightweight, cheap tube.

A group of 4 or 6 do not need to bring 4 or 6 rod tubes. Condense your rods and put as many in one tube as you can. The less tubes the better. It is your head that might get clunked by too many tubes in the planes.

Bring some ROPE. Many of our guests have told us before that they use rope to bundle their beer and soda cans and sink those to the bottom of the lake and use it as a cooler.

Another good idea. So bring some rope.

General Packing:

Soft sided duffel bags are the best and DO NOT need to exceed 50lbs. Rather have 2 smaller bags than one large bag. You can still carry as much with you in the smaller bags and they are MUCH easier for us all to handle and pack

DO NOT USE tupperware or hard sided baggage. They just DO NOT form into small places or areas in the planes.

Cardboard boxes work good for packing food. They can be bent if necessary and you can burn those when you are finished with them at the cabins.


Maximum size we like to see is 48 quart size. The larger ones are like the tupperware tubes?-just TOO HARD to get them to fit into the planes and they are just TOO HEAVY to handle and too HARD to manage. The pilots and dock workers really appreciate you using the size we recommend.

Typical food list for 4 people:

  • 2 Dozen eggs
  • 1/2 gallon milk
  • 3# bacon
  • 3# ground beef
  • 4 beef steaks
  • 4 pork chops
  • 2 ham steaks
  • bratwurst
  • 1 package hot dogs
  • 1 package lunch meat
  • 1 package hamburger buns
  • 2 loaves bread
  • 2 chicken leg & thighs
  • jelly
  • peanut butter
  • margarine
  • cooking oil
  • pancake mix
  • pancake syrup
  • flour
  • fish breading
  • salt & pepper
  • box macaroni & cheese
  • canned soup
  • canned vegetables
  • canned fruits
  • canned beef stew or spaghetti or chili (whatever we have in stock)
  • sugar package
  • cheese slices
  • cookies
  • cooking onions
  • potatoes
  • box cold cereal
  • coffee
  • kool-aid
  • breakfast drink
  • powdered milk
  • soda crackers
  • ketchup
  • mustard
  • mosquito coils
  • garbage bags
  • scouring pads
  • dish soap
  • paper towels
  • toilet paper
  • tin foil
  • lemon juice
  • tartar sauce



    Bait never hurts?some days it helps - the next day it won't make any difference.

    If there are kids in your group or novice fishermen, bait is HIGHLY recommended. Even for the experienced fishermen, it doesn't hurt to have the bait. Fishing is really good, but the live bait can make the fishing seem even faster and more furious. If you ask what we think, we will say that we recommend it, because we feel for a few extra bucks after you have spent this much on a trip, it is money that is well spent. If you feel different about this, it is entirely up to you. There are excellent lures that can do a great job, too.


    We recommend 2 to 3 dozen minnows per day per person, or a flat of worms.

    For example, 4 people for 4 days (32-48 dozen would be a good starting point)

    One thing to factor in is how many hours a day do you actually spend fishing? Do you like to cast for northern part of the day? If you do, then you can adjust for that, too.


    If you are going to use minnows, worms or leeches they need to be called into Bobby's Corner 807-227-2099 prior to your arrival. They will charge your credit card for the purchase. If you are still in need of a license you can get that there also along with anything you may have forgotten (it's a small grocery store to) Make sure you tell them that's it for Ontario North Outpost and give your name.

    The minnows come packed in Oxygen bags for the flight. At the lake, on your arrival, put the bags of minnows into the lake water while they are still in the bags. It helps the minnows to acclimate to the water temperature of the lake at a slow rate and prevents SHOCK. Don't put to many minnows in one bucket and remember to give them a drink every so often, in the heat they will die quickly if out of the water to long, and it's better to fish with live minnows.

    You should have one bucket to each boat maybe two if you're going to be out a long time. We provide a large minnow cage at the end of the dock for your use. Push the cage under the dock, in the shade away from the sunlight to keep them cooler. Always keep them in the water & shade.

    Minnows will survive if water temperatures are good. Some of them will die. That's the way with minnows. Take extra salt with you. As minnows die, strain the water off of them and salt them down very good. Place them in the freezer after they are salted. After the live minnows are gone, finish up with the salted ones. They work excellent and this way you are not losing your money on dead minnows. You CANNOT bring minnows with you across the border unless you have them salted & frozen. (NO SMELT-even if you have those frozen. NOT ALLOWED) You must buy minnows in Canada.


    Leeches can be used for bass or walleye. Roughly 10-12 dozen leeches are in each pound on an average.

    Leeches are more hardy than minnows. You can pack leeches in a Styrofoam container or leach bucket and take them out in the boat with you each day.

    Keep them in fresh water at all times and in a cooler out in the boat. At night change the water on the leeches and keep them in the refrigerator or in a cooler. If you buy a large amount, they will come in an oxygen bag filled with water. Just make sure to keep the water on the leeches fresh and keep them in a cool place (refrigerator or cooler). This will keep your leeches alive and healthy for a very long time. If you have a leech locker, bring it with you to take out in the boat with you. Do NOT leave the leeches sit out on the seat or floor of the boat in the sun. They cook and fry in the hot sun.

    Placing the leeches in a minnow bucket is NOT a good idea. They can swim out through the "slots" in the bucket.

    Due to supply and big demand, we are usually not able to get any leeches by mid August. You CANNOT bring leeches across the border with you. You MUST buy your leeches in Canada.

    Night Crawlers:

    Crawlers are sold by the dozen in a container or a flat. They are very easy to handle during your trip.

    Keep them in the refrigerator or in a cooler when you are out fishing. They can be used for walleye and for bass fishing. You can bring crawlers, so far, across the border, but they need to be packed in worm bedding or shredded newspapers. You could buy a FLAT of crawlers. Crawlers come 500 or 1000 worms to a flat.

    You cannot bring them across the border packed in dirt.

    For all bait, the key is to keep it cool and in the shade!!

    This is allot of information for a simple little thing as your bait. But a few small precautions will help your bait to stay fresh and alive and your fishing with bait will be a huge success.